Chop Robinson’s former coach says he and Jaelan Phillips will ‘terrorize’ QBs together

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Manny Diaz — who coached Miami Dolphins first-round draft pick Chop Robinson at Pennsylvania State University — said on X that he thinks Robinson and Dolphins linebacker Jaelan Phillips will make life difficult for opposing quarterbacks together.

Robinson played three seasons of college football, as he spent his first season with the University of Maryland and his last two playing for Penn State.

Perhaps his best season of college football from a statistical perspective came during the 2022 season, when he totaled 19 solo tackles, 10 tackles for loss and 26 combined tackles across 12 games played for the Nittany Lions.

In his third and final season — the 2023 season — playing football at the collegiate level before being selected by the Dolphins with the No. 21 overall pick on Thursday, he accumulated 12 solo tackles, 15 total tackles and three assisted tackles while forcing two fumbles in 10 appearances with Penn State.

As Diaz implied in his X post, Robinson is joining a Dolphins squad that employs one of the better young linebackers in the NFL today in Phillips. Phillips — who was drafted by Miami with the No. 18 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft — put up impressive numbers in the 2023 regular season considering he was limited to just eight games in his third season with the Dolphins.

The 24-year-old linebacker ended up with 43 combined tackles, 28 solo tackles, seven tackles for loss, 11 quarterback hits and 15 assisted tackles. Additionally, Phillips came up with one interception.

Unfortunately, Phillips was unable to participate in the Dolphins’ playoff game against the Kansas City Chiefs on Jan. 13. Sans one of Miami’s most disruptive defensive players, the Dolphins gave up 26 points to the Chiefs’ offense and lost by 19 points.

Dolphins fans should get excited at the thought of Robinson and Phillips taking the field together for the Dolphins once the 2024 season rolls around. Hopefully the addition of Robinson will help a Dolphins defense that was mediocre during the 2023 campaign — Miami allowed 23.0 points per contest in the regular season — reach new heights in 2024.

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Jesse is a 23-year-old sports journalist. He has experience covering football at the high-school and professional levels.